DEAR RAE : YOUR NINTH BIRTHDAY

Dear Miss Rae,

How are you? I hope your present-day finds you as happy and hopeful for your tomorrow as tonight finds you. It is the last night of your ninth year and at this moment we are watching your favorite show, The Mandalorian.

In the last year, you have given me over a thousand kisses, easy. I have received a hug from you nearly every time we passed each other throughout our days. I am forever grateful to you for your generous affection.

You have lost several teeth, received braces and had them removed, and you have gained glasses! Such a big year for you!

You have lost interest in breakfast and usually skip it altogether, though you have requested a blueberry pancake breakfast for your birthday.

You have really found an interest in graphic novels this year. Your newest discovery is the Wings of Fire series – and soon you hope to start the novels.

You still have such a deep interest in any and all animals, movie soundtracks, and art of all sorts.

You still draw something, anything each day.

You love one on one time! Whether it is with Mom, Dad, Grandma, or Papa. Whether we are drawing, talking, reading, cooking, watching a movie, shopping, enjoying a date out to eat, or simply sitting next to each other on the couch. Quality time is high on your list of favorites!

You play with your sister for hours every day! I pray that continues as long as you live under the same roof. The two of you belong together.

You are such an incredible friend to us all. Your heart is sensitive and gives love so freely. Your tongue is never short of a kind word and your belly laugh (which has not changed since you were a baby) fills our home with joy.

We love you, sweet girl.